Where are the Iguazu Falls in Brazil?
One of the things that I love the most about Brazil (my beloved country) is the fact that you’re literally never more than 3 hours from a paradisiac place. The country is full of beautiful forests, beaches, animals, waterfalls, and much more. Among these paradisiac places, one of the most famous is the amazing set of waterfalls that forms the Iguazu Falls (Quedas do Iguaçu), one of the 7 natural wonders of the world.
The Iguazu Falls in Brazil are located in the city of Foz do Iguaçu, in the state of Paraná. The set of about 275 waterfalls in the Iguaçu River lies between the Iguaçu National Park, in Brazil, and the Iguazú National Park in Argentina, on the border between the two countries.
This is for sure one of the best destinations for tourists in Brazil, but some people still struggle to find good and reliable information about how to get to the falls and also about what else can you do in this region of Brazil. In this article, I’ve tried to provide the best source of info based on my personal experiences and good friends that live in the city of Foz do Iguaçu. To learn all about it, read on.
The Iguazu Falls
The Cataratas do Iguaçu [kataˈɾatɐʒ du iɡwaˈsu]) are an amazing set of waterfalls in the Iguazu River, on the border of the Argentine province of Misiones and the Brazilian state of Paraná. The Iguazu Falls are incredibly beautiful that seems to have been carved by hand, a paradisiac scenario that is considered one of the 7 natural wonders of the world and is the largest waterfalls system in the world, dividing the river into the upper and lower Iguazu.
The Iguazu River rises more than 500km from the falls, near the city of Curitiba, the capital of the state of Paraná. For most of its course, the river flows through Brazil, however, most of the falls are on the Argentine side. That’s why the better views of the falls are from the Brazilian side. Below its confluence with the San Antonio River, the Iguazu River forms the boundary between Argentina and Brazil.
A Natural Wonder of The World
The Iguazu Falls are incredible and give us just a glimpse of the power of nature. It’s even hard to describe the sensation you have when you face the falls. But to you know that this is not just a biased opinion of a passionate Brazilian like me, there’s a fact that shows exactly what I’m talking about: in 2011, after global voting that took more than 4 years, the Iguaçu Falls were elected as one of the 7 Wonders of The World.
With 275 waterfalls with different heights (some can reach more than 80 meters) in an exuberant piece of Atlantic Forest, the place is a must-visit for anyone visiting the south of Brazil. The Iguaçu National Park ranks as the second most visited in the country. In 2019, last year with normal travel volume before the pandemic, the Iguazu Falls received nearly 2 million visitors on the Brazilian side and 1.5 million on the Argentine side.
The Devil’s Throat
The most impressive of the 275 falls is the Devil’s Throat. With a “U” and 82 meters high, 150 meters wide, and 700 meters long, the waterfall called “Garganta do Diabo” in Portuguese marks the border between Brazil and Argentina. On the Brazilian side, you can enjoy all the beauty of the “Throat” from a distance, from a viewpoint below the waterfalls. On the Argentine side, you literally walk above the falls in platforms. It’s a frightening yet amazing experience.
Walking along the trails of the National Park makes its visitors feel all the exuberance and perfection of this wonder of nature. There are two options for visiting the falls: on the Argentine side (option in which the tourist will have to go through immigration and customs) and on the Brazilian side. Rafting, Climbing, and Hiking are activities available in the region. For those who like to fly, there is the possibility to fly over the area by helicopter.
The Iguaçu National park is located in Foz do Iguaçu, a great Brazilian city with a lot of things to do and a great infrastructure for tourists, as the city is one of the most visited by travelers in the country. With excellent options of hotels and resorts (some are among the best in the country), staying in Foz do Iguaçu is a great option to visit the Iguazu Falls and 2 more countries in the same travel, as in the city is located the triple border between Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina.
About the falls, the experience in Brazil is way better for those that want to actually see the beauty of the giant set of waterfalls. As the Brazilian part is on the “lower” side. Also, for those that are afraid of heights or being constantly over the water walking by overpasses and bridges, visiting the Brazilian side is the best option.
But there’s more to it than “just the falls”. In Brazil, right next to the Iguazu Falls you can visit a “Bird Sanctuary”. The place called “Parque das Aves” (Bird Park) is an essential tour for anyone visiting Foz do Iguaçu. Located near the Iguaçu National Park, at “Parque das Aves” you will experience direct contact with more than 1320 birds, covering about 143 different species. There are 16.5 hectares of exuberant Atlantic Forest where you can walk and have direct contact with incredible animals.
Best Things About The Brazilian Side:
- Best Views To The Iguazu Falls
- Amazing Hotel With Views To The Falls
- Parque das Aves (Bird Park, check here)
- Great Variety of 5-Star Hotels and Resorts
- Excellent Restaurants
There’s a local joke that says that the only great thing about the Argentine side of the Iguazu Falls is the great views of the Brazilian side, but that’s not true (local friendly rivalry often results in this kind of saying lol). Jokes aside, the Argentine side of the Iguazu Falls provides an amazing and totally different experience. In my opinion, the travel is not complete without checking both.
While on the Brazilian side you’ll be on the lower side and usually seeing the falls from below, on the Iguazú National Park in Argentina you’ll be on the top of the falls! The best example of it is the “Devil Throat”. The view from the Brazilian side, in my opinion, is more beautiful, but the experience of being above that insane volume of water flowing to a “U” shaped 150 meters wide and 80 meters high waterfall. It’s an amazing (and scary) experience.
Another difference between the two national parks where you can go to see the falls is the fact that while in Brazil you’ll be walking along trails as stopping in viewpoints, on the Argentinean side you will almost always be walking along bridges and platforms over the water. This is because, as said before, the park is located at the top of the waterfalls, with several incredible paths over the water. But rest assured, the structure is safe and the paths are beautiful!
Way More Than The Falls
Argentina is a beautiful country with an incredible culture and amazing food. And guys, the person telling you this is a born and bred Brazilian (if you don’t know, there’s a lot of rivalry between two countries, but usually only on sports), so trust me: the place is amazing! Anyways, having a least one meal in an Argentine steakhouse or eating some empanadas on the streets is a must for anyone visiting the area.
Unfortunately for the locals, the economy in Argentina is not doing well in the past years, but this is great news for anyone considering visiting the region, even more, if your income is in USD, GBP, or EUR. Right now with 1 dollar, you can buy more than 100 “Pesos Argentinos”, the local currency. Almost every business accepts US Dollars, so this is a good way to make the payments over there.
Best Things About The Argentine Side:
- Iguazu Falls Immersion (Incredible Views)
- Cheap Restaurants (with Excellent Meat)
- Cheap Great Quality Wines (Awarded Labels)
- Awesome Street Food
- Businesses Accept US Dollars
How Do You Get To Iguazu Falls in Brazil?
The Iguazu Falls are formed by an amazing set of 275 waterfalls surrounded by a gigantic area of well-preserved Atlantic Forest. The falls are located right on the border of two countries, Argentina and Brazil. As most of the tourists visiting the falls travel to Brazil, here’s the easiest way to get to the Iguazu falls in Brazil.
As a general rule, the best way to get to Iguazu Falls in Brazil is to visit the city of Foz do Iguaçu, in the state of Paraná, where the waterfalls are located. Once in Foz do Iguaçu, it’s possible to visit the Iguaçu National Park using a rental car, tourism buses, taxis, public buses, or Uber.
As the city of Foz do Iguaçu receives about 2 million tourists every year, the city has a great infrastructure that is well prepared for travelers. There are excellent options of hotels, resorts, shopping malls, restaurants, and a decent airport. Once you’re in Foz do Iguaçu, it’s also easier to visit Argentina and check the views from the top of falls on the other side of the border.
In Which Country Is Iguazu Falls Located?
The Iguazu Falls are worldwide famous, especially after they were elected in global voting that took 4 years as one of the 7 natural wonders of the world. This is one of the hottest tourist destinations in South America, even so, there are a lot of people that have no clue in which country is Iguazu Falls located.
The Iguazu Falls are located on the border of two countries, Brazil and Argentina. That’s why there are two ways of visiting the amazing set of waterfalls: in the Iguaçu National Park, in Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil, or the Iguazú National Park in Misiones, Argentina.
Both sides are awesome and provide unique views. The Brazilian side is better to actually see the falls, as a huge part of the Brazilian national park is located on the lower part of the river. On the other hand, the Argentine side is the best for immersion on the falls, as most of the time, you’ll be walking of bridges and platforms over the water. It’s amazing.
Is Iguazu Falls Open Brazil?
One of the best ways to visit the Iguazu Falls is through the city of Foz do Iguaçu, in Brazil, but since the pandemic started, a lot of people are in doubt in the national parks for visiting the falls is open or not.
The Iguazu Falls in Brazil are open for visitation since September 2020. There are some rules to access the Iguaçu National Park, as using masks and temperature checks, but the experience of seeing the beauty (and power) of the 275 waterfalls is still the same.
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